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A Mind Opening Experience: The Jackson County Public Library

By Alex Chandler and Regina Vellanti

Not just a place to read


As a workplace for many individuals and a free environment open to the public for learning, the Jackson County Public Library serves as a cornerstone for much of the community. The volunteers and librarians focus much of their time and dedication on children by having schools across Jackson County visit the library to hear storytelling. They believe that our children are the future of our community and that expanding their minds will enhance children’s chances of success. Many people in the community look to the library as a place to go relax, get away and do research.

Educating those less fortunate


Not every household can receive or afford access to the Internet, and, with 16.9 percent of the county’s population at or below the poverty level, this library gives its citizens Internet connectivity in a world of growing advanced technology. Volunteers and librarians also dedicate their time to providing computer literacy to individuals who are not up to date with computer skills. 

The library offers a free online language learning system called “Before You Know It” which has over 70 languages for those interested in learning a new language. The library also has a monthly movie club where popcorn, soda and the movie are free. The library also serves as a self help center, hosting several group programs to help individuals with alcohol, drug and domestic abuse issues. The Jackson County Public Library is not only out to change minds through reading but to change lives through support. They are always looking for dedicated volunteers who understand the problems in the area and are proactive in guiding support groups on their paths to recovery.

Special needs program

Serving Jackson County means taking care of everyone, but our mentally disabled citizens are often forgotten. Those with special needs can benefit from people who will not only give their time but also a piece of their hearts. At Jackson County Public Library, all people are encouraged and welcomed with open arms.

Getting a new home

The volunteers and librarians spend their time focusing on helping the community by not only giving Jackson County a place to learn but also giving people their time. The Jackson County Public Library is working hard towards building a more sufficient library by reaching 90 percent of a 1.6 million dollar goal to help expand the learning environment of Jackson County.

For more information, contact www.fontanalib.org/sylva/index.htm.



These profiles were created by the students in Mary Adams's English 303 (spring 2010) class